The Upper Room (Lent Poems 37)

Now somehow still hiding, we gather,
Afraid of the words that the women have said, yet
Hearts swarming with all the things we have heard,
And into the padlocks and chains of the room,
Walks now a stranger who knows all our names
And sparks in us a dangerous, snow-melting hope,
Like the sound of the first birds of earliest spring
Or the rush of the wildest torrents of thaw; and in
A voice of deep comfort, he says to us, Peace,
As he shows us his side and the scars where the spear
And the nails have pierced. And we look then upon
The one we have pierced, as he breaths and pours out
His Spirit like flame; Receive now my Spirit, he says,
And the sound of his voice is the hope of deep rivers
Flowing forgiveness. What sins you forgive,
He says, are forgiven. I look to the scars
On his hands and his side. The cost is there spoken
And always supplied. The room’s full of silence,
His breath in our lungs, and the crushed hope
Of the last days revived, now alive.

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